What rights do I have if I use an assistance animal?

The Disability Discrimination Act and Equal Opportunity Act make it illegal for people to discriminate against anybody because they use an assistance animal, or have that assistance animal with them. These laws have different definitions of what an assistance animal is.

These laws mean that assistance animals are allowed in all public places except zoos and places where surgery is done (called operating theatres). This means assistance animals are allowed in:

All trains, trams, buses, ferries, taxis and airplanes

  • Theatres
  • Schools, universities and TAFEs
  • Restaurants
  • Shops
  • Airports
  • Markets, festivals and other public events
  • All other public places

If somebody won’t let you be in a public place because you have an assistance animal, they might be breaking the law. You can try and explain this to them. If you want, you can also complain to the Victorian Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission or the Australian Human Rights Commission.